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Contract Administrator

The job market for construction Contract Administrators is extremely hot right now. There is a talent shortage of Contract Administrators which means that good talent is being snapped up and payed extremely well. It also means people with less experience would be considered for roles much earlier than in previous years. Expect this to continue for the next 6-18 months dependant on government border restrictions.

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Contract Administrator Career Pathways

You may be a ‘career’ Contract Administrator who loves your role and you’re happy to continue being a Contract Administrator for a lifetime. You’re not penned in to a particular tier level of builder or industry if this is the case for you. Ensuring you make your aspirations known to your employer is critical, though. Letting them know you’re happy with the status-quo is the key to a great employee/employer relationship and work-life fulfilment. There are plenty of ways to continue to grow in over your career, without needing to be anything other than a CA. Broadening your sector experience is one, as is project value experience.
Should you want to aspire to diversify your skill set and/or climb the corporate ladder, you have plenty of options. Senior Contract Administrator roles are dependant on the size and needs of each builder.  Alternatively, with 7+ years experience, you could step directly into a Contract Manager role.
If your current role has provided some Project Coordinator/Management experience you can move into a Project Manager role. Project Managers have the capacity to then step into Senior Project Manager or Construction Manager. There’s not a definitive timeline for career progression but it would be a minimum of 15-20 years construction experience and also dependant on the employing Builder.
Should your current role not provide you Project Coordinator or Management experience, you can still make the switch by moving sideways into a Project Coordinator role. Again, it’s all about ensuring you’re communicating your career aspirations with your manager and planning your next career step.

How to become a construction Contract Administrator

To become a Contract Administrator you are either accepted into a Graduate Program, usually only available in Tier 1/2 builders, or directly into a junior Contract Administrator role in Tier 3. You’ll be required to hold a Bachelor Degree in Construction Management, Engineering, Economics, Quantity Surveying, Law, Commerce or equivalent and it would be advantageous to have some site/builder experience gained through either paid or unpaid work experience or cadetship.
You may also move across from site work such as Foreman or Site Manager should you wish to go down a different career path. While this is an unusual move, it’s definitely not impossible. Speaking with your employer and discussing if this could be an option for you is the best place to start. From there, mapping out and then implementing a plan to learn the skill set required for this role is essential. It may be a pre-requisite to undertake a degree in a relevant discipline.

What does a construction Contract Administrator do?

A Contract Administrator collaborates with project managers, architects and other construction professionals to ensure the goals of a project. They are responsible for all paperwork associated with contracts, projects and services provided; and are the first point of contact in resolving any queries or issues that may arise concerning these matters.
The Contract Administrator also will oversee works, and report to senior management both during the project and after its completion; collecting relevant data and reporting this back in terms of project outcomes and efficiencies.
The Contract Administrator always has the company as a first priority and thus, in reviewing contracts and other documentation, must consider this information from the standpoint of potential profitability or issues that may arise.
A strong Contract Administrator must possess strong attention to detail as they are responsible for important documentation that is circulated amongst many different parties. They must be able to pull out key ideas and information from text to share with relevant personnel involved with the project. Strong communication skills are essential.
Contract Administrator’s should also regularly review changes in policy and legislation that may impact the industry, and update internal documentation accordingly to ensure adherence is maintained at all times.

What is a Contract Administrator?

Hear direct from Balmain & Co’s Contract Administrators on:

  • Pathways
  • Prerequisites
  • Key skills
  • Responsibilities
  • Career opportunities

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